One can look at this picture and say that the little girl is dreaming about what she will be when she grows up. On the other hand, one can look at this picture and say that the girl is already grown; however, she does not know who she is and continues to see herself as a child with little self-confidence or self-identity.
Today, more women than ever suffer from depression and a personal identity crisis. Almost every magazine offers women and girls a solution on how to be thinner, prettier, smarter, savvy, chic, younger, popular and wealthy. Every other television show or commercial tries to sell the notion that we can find value, love and significance if we follow this pattern or buy that product.
But there is another, more reliable way to find our true identity, to know the girl in the mirror, and to answer the questions that plague us: Who am I? Where do I belong? What is my purpose in life?
One day while Jesus was traveling along with his disciples, he raised the question, “who do you say I am?” Simon Peter answered, “You are the Messiah, the Son of the living God.” Jesus replied, “You are blessed, Simon son of John, because my Father in heaven has revealed this to you. You did not learn this from any human being…” Matthew 16:15-17 (NLT).
What is most interesting about this exchange is what Jesus said to Peter. Peter had not learned about Jesus, who Jesus truly was, from anyone, other than the Father revealing it to him through the Holy Spirit. In the same manner, when we know who Jesus truly is through revelations of the Holy Spirit, then we also know who we are as his children, “For his Spirit joins with our spirit to affirm that we are God’s children” Romans 8:16 (NLT). Our eyes are opened through a new and personal relationship with Jesus because we can answer the question Jesus asked Peter with the same conviction.
When we know that we are God’s children, nothing else matters. Our eyes are opened to his unconditional love, grace and mercy, our ears are attentive to his guidance and direction for our lives, and our hearts are transformed by a deep understanding of what it means to be truly forgiven by Jesus’ sacrifice on the cross for us.
Jesus’ answer is simple. He says, “know me, and you will also know my Father in heaven”, paraphrased John 8: 18-20 (NLT). Through that process, we will know ourselves like we have never known ourselves before. We can shut out all the other voices that bombard us daily. Oh, what sweet peace! What sweet confidence, what sweet knowledge! The identity crisis is over!
(Note: I do study the bible, but I am not a bible scholar…I speak and write only from my own experiences.)